German photographer Maren Krings has been taking photos since she was 16-years-old. Now with offices in Germany and Austria, she says she sees photography as her passport to the world and to all the things that interest her. And just wait until you hear the lengths she’s gone to in order to get “the shot”! Here is our latest interview with a photographer.
How did you get involved in photography?
My interest in photography was triggered by an exchange year in the United States, which gave me the chance to take my very first photography class. Soon after, in 2000, I started my studies at the Savannah College of Art and Design with a major in photography, which I finished in 2003. Ever since then I have been working professionally as photographer and artist.
How would you define your style as a photographer?
Natural, inspired by life! I tend to say I am a photojournalist, documentarian, storyteller, but there are some aspects of fine art and commercial mixed in as well. I love to observe and moreover, I love to see my camera as a passport to pretty much everything that interests me. Questions, adventures, revealing things, getting close to the elements.
Where is your favourite place or thing to shoot?
My favourite moments arise usually when some really special light situation kicks in… that is when I start burning behind my lens and things start to go by themselves.
How has photography shaped your day-to-day?
Photography has become my life! It started out being a dream of mine, then it became the official purpose of my studies and soon enough I realised that each and every door that opens in my life is opened by my photography, or else by my camera being the passport to ask anything I feel curious about!
It has become the purpose of getting me out of bed in the morning, at night or also the reason why I sometimes stay up days in a row in order to get the shots that I feel passionate about. Also, photography has allowed me to live a very fulfilled life, which allows me to make my own decisions and report to myself, which also is linked to self-discipline and the need to hard and dedicated work.
You sound so passionate about it, it’s great! What cameras and lenses do you use?
I work on both canon and Fuji Eos 5Dsr (amongst older models) with a 17-40 mm, 52mm, and 70-300 mostly and Fuji Xt-2. (18-55 mm and 55-200 mm mostly.)
What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done to get the shot?
This brings up memories of my second book assignment, which I was working on from 2012 until 2014. I was in the Tyrolean (Austrian) mountains with rescue teams. There were many shoots that fell into the category of crazy… First, being buried in a tiny hole under meters of snow with another mountain rescuer to be test-rescued by an avalanche dog!
Second, hanging on a 12-meter tow rope off a helicopter with another three rescuers, including their dogs, spinning in circles under the flying helicopter. All while trying to not lose orientation and shooting these guys and girls all clinging to me, with only centimetres of separation.
And three, canyoning with the mountain rescuers, going through 70-meter drops of gorges, having water rush on your head and turning you like a worm on your rope and on the rock, as well as swimming whitewater with a camera box attached.
Well that definitely sounds like some crazy stuff! Who has inspired you as a photographer?
Sebastião Salgado inspired me with his infinite beauty of which he displays even the most dramatic circumstances. Robert Capa, inspired me to be in the middle of things happening and merging to be part of the process, to trigger personal understanding and empathy for taking a photograph.
What advice would you tell an aspiring photographer?
Be authentic, don’t let yourself be carried away by the constant visual trends… they tend to get in between us and our vision! Be motivated and take big breaths. The market is difficult since everyone nowadays is a photographer. That is why it is getting more and more important to have a solid education and background in photography and once again be very strong-willed.
Can you share a photographic resource you personally use?
I try to connect myself with a lot of the other professionals out there. Enecco_outdoors is a great networking device bringing together photographers, filmmakers, locations scouts, models, agencies and outdoor bound companies.
Another helpful way is to look for companies you like, connect to them and start being an ambassador… that will link you up with many people. Also, I like lens culture, world press photo and the networks linked to them.
To see more of Maren Krings’ work, go to: www.360-photography-mk.de
About the Author
Cotton Camera Carrier Systems designs high-quality holsters and harnesses that are functional and reliable in all situations.
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